To be honest, I’m not sure how I first stumbled across The Cadillac Three but it’s safe to say I’ve had “Peace Love & Dixie” ringing my ears ever since! With tickets for their November show in Glasgow long since purchased, I’ve eagerly awaited the release of their third studio album, Legacy.
For those not in the know, TC3 are a trio who have known each other since high school, who hail from Nashville, Tennessee and who proudly play a 21st Century blend of rock’n’roll, Southern rock that’s all tied up with strands of country music.
Legacy was released on Big Machine Records on 25th August and boasts eleven tracks all written and produced by the boys in TC3 – Jaren Johnston (vocals/guitar), Kelby Ray (lap steel guitar) and Neil Mason (drums).
Opening track Cadillacin’ sets the tone right from the off. “It’s all about style. It’s all about cool.” The song is full of swagger and has a really catchy riff. Swathed in his trademark gravel tones, Jaren’s vocals add the perfect element of dirt here.
Boys, I’m in the passenger seat, buckled up and ready for the rest of the ride with this record!
If Legacy highlights one thing, it’s the maturity of TC3 and really puts the stamp -or should that be stomp- on their unique sound.
Current single, Dang If We Didn’t, manages to perfect a nigh on impossible feat in that it mixes a radio friendly, feel good vibe with genuine raw passion for the song. “Dang if we didn’t get drunk last night,” sings Jaren. By halfway through the song, I can taste the whiskey on my lips, see that shot of tequila getting lined up and am feeling the hangover approaching.. ha ha.
It’s fair to say that alcohol of one sort or another gets a regular mention in many TC3 songs.
There are three tracks though on here that show a softer, more mature and even romantic side to these good ol’ boys.
Hank And Jesus is the first of those. A soft ballad reflecting on growing up. Hank is a certain Mr Williams and Jesus – well, you can work that one out. “Thank Daddy for Hank. Thank Mama for Jesus. Between the vinyl and the bible it was everything I needed.”
Love Me Like Liquor, featuring Grammy Award winning singer/songwriter Lori McKenna, is a slow sultry (alcohol themed) ballad. Think last dance of the night. You know, the slow smoochy one. “Love me like liquor, touch me like tequila” and so the comparisons go on far into the night. Gorgeous.
Title track, Legacy, rounds things off. It’s stripped back and lays the emotions bare for all to see right from the start. If there is one song that is the jewel in the crown of this album, this song is it. Their coming of age masterpiece
While I’ve perhaps highlighted the softer elements of Legacy, there’s still plenty of energy and swampy swaggering rock’n’roll on offer, particularly in Tennessee and Demolition Man. TC3 can add the dirty riffs and groove fuelled stomp as good as the rest of them.
Do yourself a favour, fetch a drink, buy the album and crank up the volume. Your neighbours will love you for it.
(images sourced via Google – credits to the owners)